Who doesn’t like social media traffic? If you’re building your brand, you need followers—plain and simple. Having a core consumer group—one which you can rely on—isn’t all fun and games, however. You might have a fancy Facebook page, complete with targeted ads, but you’ll have a tough time staying relevant: Over 90 million small businesses have the same plan.
So, is it possible to pull ahead? In 2020, roughly 87.1 percent of U.S. marketers are expected to utilize the platform for their current, or next, campaign. Their approaches aren’t tactic-exclusive, either; a small business needn’t post habitually to get ahead in social media marketing. Cold, hard analytics and PPC are more than enough for an experienced data analysis team.
Take Caution Before Creating a Campaign
It’s definitely possible to garner a big following on Facebook—even without Instagram, no less. It’s also a slog to break out of initial conversion struggles, cross-channel pitfalls, consumer mistargeting, and inconsistent brand communication strategies.
We’re covering the top 10 ways to overcome these struggles, examining Facebook’s consumer—and marketer—climate in 2020. Before we do, though, it’s important to acknowledge a particular misstep a lot of marketers are still making.
Facebook Ads are Easy to Use But Tough to Master
Facebook ads are tempting. We understand. Facebook’s ad manager is incredibly accessible—and even more customizable. By using a custom setup to dish out targeted ads to particular consumer segments, you can even redirect wayward customers to your landing page. Instead of shoppers losing focus after checking out a brand’s newest YouTube video, they can be convinced to pay the brand, itself, a visit.
These digital marketing approaches take a lot of time to develop, however. Ad prices decreased by four percent in 2019’s second quarter, but ad impressions rose by 33 percent. New advertisers have a freshly cut field to compete in—and they were ready to play ball yesterday.
Is Facebook a Dead End for Marketers?
Facebook itself nets 40 percent of its yearly digital display advertisement revenue. That’s right: Nearly half of earned ad money. Google comes in second place by keeping 12 percent of earned ad revenue.
Marketers often receive their earned ad click dollars, too. While Facebook’s claim is high, the true message is written in the fine print. To put it simply: Facebook has a rapidly growing ad platform—and it needs to sustain it.
A lot of people have capitalized on Facebook’s many marketing opportunities, and the platform needs to cushion the unavoidable damages caused by effective and flopping strategies alike.
Plenty of Opportunities for Plenty of Operators
Today, Facebook has over four million advertisers—and these advertisers, each with unique business objectives, are causing a lot of commotion. You’d be correct in the assertion that it’s easy to get turned around in the trend waves propelled by marketers leading the crowd.
But even campaign captains need to navigate the wakes of others.
Succeeding Where Others Have Failed: Getting Page Views
The art of attracting brand followers is nuanced, certainly. It requires persistence, patience and a propensity for taking occasional creative risks: Definitely.
Once more, though, the question posed earlier can’t help but come to the stressful forefront of the Facebook marketer looking to boost page views. While the answer is still “yes,” the same question has already spawned a new question regardless.
Strategy One: Create Invite-Only Groups for Active Followers
For the inexperienced marketer, creating an invite-only group might seem like trying a backflip with a week of dance practice. Surprisingly, though, this is a smart approach for budding brands.
Facebook is about communities—and tight-knit groups exemplify the quality Facebook’s crowd came to the platform for. A closed group stands out to potential followers—and over 1 billion people use Facebook groups every month.
Reach out to relevant groups. Engage its community. You needn’t poach its users to enhance its network. If you build the social venue, they’ll take a gander.
Strategy Two: Post When the Competition Isn’t
Here’s an unfortunate truth: There’s no true solution to the “perfect ad placement hour” problem. Your prospective followers might work a nine-to-five—but 74 percent of high-income workers prefer Facebook over other platforms.
Don’t toss out consumer segment insights, of course, as they’re important. But take a look at your competing brand’s posting hours. Are their free slots preferred by your target audience? It might be time to rearrange your posting schedule.
Strategy Three: Don’t Post Too Often
A brand needs to be spontaneous and creative in its content, presentation and mission statement—but it also needs to be decisive, quick to act and maintain a keen eye for campaign maneuvers capable of outpacing emergent consumer trends.
A good way to do this is to examine your posting frequency. Aim for one post a day—otherwise, you might seem spammy. Reshare or curate a post every other day. As above, check up on your competitor’s approach to the topic.
Strategy Four: Partner with Other Brand Pages
Creating a closed group, and then reaching out to groups next door, is a good approach. Becoming friends with the neighbor is an even better one. Elite Daily and Huffington Post share over 20 million Facebook fans who fall into the same target market.
These Facebook users share each other’s content every day—sometimes multiple times per day. Take a page out of their book by being mutually beneficial. This might be a useful complementary strategy for established small businesses wanting to boost its cross-channel opportunities—but it’s a very good strategy for emerging startups who need a network, and fast.
Strategy Five: Stand Out in Your Status Posts
Too many marketers try to “play it cool” as the new face in town. Facebook may be well-known for its many sub-communities, but it’s also well-known for its algorithmic presentation of content its followers are likely to enjoy. Because of this, it’s easy to feel like you’re in an echo chamber at times.
But something else makes the cut into the upper levels Facebook’s News Feed: unique, or even dissenting news and opinions. This isn’t to suggest you should be antagonistic, of course. It just means you should make your posts unique enough to garner user interest.
There are some strategies, of course, where providing general-leaning information is really effective—and established brands love engaging new followers by sharing brand insights and experiences. Just make sure your content, relevant yet a little common, has some lesser-known insights visible to the passerby.
Strategy Six: Stand Out in Your Multimedia Posts
A great way to do this successfully is to browse the ideas your brand category seems to raise or inspire. Find out what your prospective followers are likely to watch on YouTube—including related and popular news stories, related product reviews, and relevant hobbies.
Plot twist: Ditch these ideas.
No, really. You’re better off not sharing low-hanging fruit. 60 percent of Americans watch digital videos on Facebook, and users, in general, spend a whopping 38 minutes per day skimming the News Feed’s trending articles. They’ve seen the basic stuff.
Much like the above strategy, it’s a good idea to avoid commonplace ideas. This is doubly true if you’re catering to the enthusiasts of your industry. If you sell racing bikes boasting pliable balance and mid-road puncture resistance at a great price point, try to avoid posting too many generalist-knowledge YouTube videos.
Strategy Seven: Run a Contest
Branded Facebook contests are always a good marketing approach. They reach out to your audience, offer rewards for interesting engagements, raise hype and give you the chance to meet your followers up close.
Check out Facebook’s Promotion Guidelines, and make sure your contest has a low entry barrier. It’s about fun, you know? Top off the contest with an additional promotion for eventgoers sharing a hashtag, or an Instagram post, to compound your upcoming pageviews.
Strategy Eight: Instagram Before Facebook
Instagram is a great complement to Facebook, at first glance, due to Facebook’s ownership over it. The corporate hierarchy doesn’t suggest you should kick off your outreach promotions at the ladder’s top, however.
Even if you’re shooting for Facebook pageviews, Instagram is often a better place to lead an audience there. It’s simply more accessible in nature—proposing a less chaotic content stream, short-view content digestion, and brand information word limit. Instagram has over one billion active monthly users—and it’s still growing rapidly.
Strategy Nine: Ditch the Hashtags
A BuzzSumo study of over one billion Facebook posts, across 30 million pages, examined hashtag use and response. Their evidence pointed to one very clear, very unfortunate, trend:
Facebook users don’t handle hashtag fatigue well, and they’re already more likely to chase the above-mentioned short-list, highly digestible, information on “short but sweet” platforms with details on brief display. In 2020, an age-old content attraction rule still holds true: Brevity is the soul of wit.
Strategy Ten: Just Ask
Sometimes, asking for a Facebook Like upfront is your best bet. You’d be surprised by the number of pageviews you can garner from a true-blue, all-honesty request. If you’re still struggling in the Facebook followers department, make some changes to your next YouTube post. Try out a description like this:
“So, what do you guys think? We totally loved making this video, and chilling with you guys in last month’s comments was great. If you love what we do, pop by our Facebook in the link below to throw us a Like? Every Like counts. And every Like helps us reach our goal of posting weekly stuff for everyone. Sounds great, right?”
Always take your Facebook visibility approach in stride. And, whether you’re new to Facebook or simply want to grow your network, reach out to your brand neighbors. Set up some contributor posts. Or hang out in cool, lesser-known Facebook groups. Connect at an upcoming tradeshow, or simply enjoy the marketing experience with them. There’s always stuff to talk about, learn about, and try out. Who knows? Facebook business success can be elusive, but it can surprise one all the same.
Sounds great, right?